Tuesday, July 14, 2009

My First Quilt

I am not always a jump on the bandwagon type person, but this bandwagon has been so fun that here I go. . . .

I learned how to sew in 4-H and 7th grade home economics. I made a pillowcase that no one used, a sweatshirt with a neck that went to my sholders, a jumper that I actually wore, and knit pants that I didn't. My mother hated to sew, but she did own a sewing machine. We had a couple quilts in the house from great-grandmothers I never knew. One of them I got to sleep under. (My mother says she is going to give it to me one day.)

In the late 80s I was in high school and at church there was a program for the young women to learn stuff. Some things you did because they were on a list, and other things you got to make your own project. I decided I wanted to make a quilt. My mother pulled out a bunch of hawaiian print fabric that she had saved since we had lived in Hawaii when I was tiny. These were factory ends from a hawaiian clothing factory or something like that. She had already started cutting squares. Perfect!

I continued cutting squares, with scissors of course, until I thought I had enough. I had heard that to make a quilt you just sew a row of squares together and then sew the rows together so that is what I did. I sewed rows of squares together. The problem came when I went to sew the rows together and none of the squares matched up -- surprise, surprise! I have always been a little resourceful and I had no clue how to make the squares match up so I turned some of the rows around so the ones that matched up least were together. I guess some of them were so "off" that I could make it look like they weren't suppose to match.

And of course I tied it. And of course I used a sheet for the back, but here it is after all these years. It took me years to bind it. I should have just folded the back over to the top, but I cut the strips off the sheet and sewed them back on. Each side had it's own strip of binding so the corners are coming apart. Oh well. The fabric is so great that I still love MY FIRST QUILT. . . .

Then here is my latest quilt. It actually isn't too impressive, but the construction is much better. My squares actually do come together where they are suppose to. This was a quilt I made to take to kids' ball games.

Amazing how long this simple quilt took me. I think it was less than a year - maybe? It kept getting put in the UFO pile.

I guess I am still resourceful because this quilt has a story of it's own. As I was deciding what size to make the block borders, I came up with two different sizes that I was considering. When I was cutting, I cut the width off the bigger set of numbers and the length off the smaller set of numbers so my borders didn't fit.

This time I knew how to fix the problem, but I didn't want to re cut all my borders down to the skinnier width. So I just made one border skinnier and two borders shorter and then it all fit perfectly. I thought the movement of the inner squares would be fun. I don't think it's that noticable, but it kind of makes you look twice.

Yes, the batting is green. It is one of Quilter's Dream Batting's new batts. I think it is called Dream Green. It is polyester batting made from recycled 2-liter bottles. That's why it is green. It feels like their regular poly, which I like. It has barely more loft than cotton and has a real nice drape. It will be good for ball games.

And so, to mix metaphors, "Come on in! The waters fine!"

In case you're wondering, here's the original post that started this fun parade of First Quilts:

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